"I kind of like it, but I don't like it," Maybin said. "It's weird. I like it just because it makes me feel safe to go headfirst, especially [leading] with my left hand. I'm probably going to wear it until I'm done playing, just to be safe, especially because I'm very uncomfortable sliding feet-first trying to steal bases."
Maybin was strongly against the mitt when he returned from the disabled list after a sprained thumb cost him three weeks in late August. He continued to slide headfirst into second base until he bruised the thumb Aug. 29, catching it between Tyler Saladino's knee and the bag. He returned to action Sept. 5, but didn't try stealing a base until last weekend, when he tried sliding feet-first.
"It just slows me down," Maybin said of going in feet-first. "You go from full speed, and me being a long guy leaning over, to having to flip myself over. Believe it or not, that slows me down just enough.
"It blew my mind when I got thrown out the other night, because I had a great jump. It had to be [going] feet-first. I went and watched it, and I slowed down so much right before I started my slide. I was like, 'Give me the oven mitt. I'm over it.'"
Maybin started wearing the mitt during this series.
The mitt, like the one Davis wore during his two seasons in Detroit, has one small pocket for the thumb and one large pocket for the fingers. It has strong backing on top to protect the thumb and fingers from being crushed, and it also protects the wrist from possible injury.
"It makes me feel claustrophobic, even though it's on my hand," Maybin said. "It's weird."
Still, given the choice of that or an open-fingered glove, Maybin chose the mitt.
"It definitely protects my whole hand," he said. "It's in there real tight and snug. It takes some getting used to, though."